Thomas Nast’s Santa Claus

Thomas Nast’s Santa Claus medallion was painted and kiln fired for a client of Burton Studios in Port Huron, Michigan, who then leaded it into a beautiful Victorian door panel.

The 13” diameter circle of glass was of a wispy-enough texture to see through for the initial tracing of this very detailed illustration. This first step of painting the thin black tracing lines was very time-consuming but crucial to get the details of items and shading just right.

A few firings later, with each one adding more details, shadings and color to the panel.

More color added, with each one requiring a cooler kiln firing than the last. Some reds and yellows still burned out and the paint had to be reapplied in thin layers to build up the color.

A deep magenta base of color was added for Santa’s suit to get a final product of true red.

The last layering of color, with white and dark reds added for shadows, for firing #11.

Santa is finished, and ready to be leaded into a stained glass and beveled door panel.

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